Thursday, March 25, 2010

Healthcare Reformed

I won't lie to you. I don't have a firm grasp about the healthcare reform bill that just passed. What I DO know is that my daughter's and wife's diabetes have always categorized them in the woeful category of outcasts with a "pre-existing condition." Insurance companies treat this special group like lepers and small business owners like me pay a hefty, hefty premium in order to make sure that my family gets coverage.

Diabetes supplies like glucose test strips are expensive, but lots of testing leads to good control. Good control has big benefits in the long run. There's lessened chances of diabetic complications like blindness, heart disease and amputation. You think insurance companies would recognize the benefit of this, but in practice they don't. They think more short term and bet that you'll switch policies before they realize the benefits of a healthy policy holder.

We're lucky we have the coverage even though we sometimes have to battle with the insurance companies to get the supplies and treatment that are necessary for tight control. But we get what we need. Others aren't so lucky. I have run into some lower income parents when we do outreach at the hospital and I worry that their kids wouldn't get the proper care after their diagnosis. It's sad and frustrating.

I hope that this bill will help them get good care for their children who now fall into the "pre-existing condition" class. Diabetes is hard enough to manage without one more label to deal with.

Make sure to check out the spirited discussion about the health care reform bill on the Juvenation forum.

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